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What are the odds?

reggie miles 23 Jan 09 - 06:57 PM
Charley Noble 23 Jan 09 - 09:44 PM
Ythanside 23 Jan 09 - 09:57 PM
Nerd 24 Jan 09 - 03:28 PM
Stewart 24 Jan 09 - 04:49 PM
Stewart 06 Feb 09 - 02:24 PM
Rapparee 06 Feb 09 - 02:32 PM
Stewart 06 Feb 09 - 03:01 PM
GUEST,TJ in San Diego 06 Feb 09 - 06:21 PM
sharyn 06 Feb 09 - 10:23 PM
Alice 06 Feb 09 - 10:49 PM
KT 06 Feb 09 - 11:19 PM
katlaughing 06 Feb 09 - 11:39 PM
van lingle 07 Feb 09 - 08:04 AM
Sandra in Sydney 07 Feb 09 - 09:35 AM
reggie miles 29 Mar 09 - 12:11 PM
breezy 29 Mar 09 - 01:42 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 29 Mar 09 - 05:55 PM
reggie miles 29 Mar 09 - 11:04 PM
reggie miles 31 Mar 09 - 05:16 AM
pavane 31 Mar 09 - 07:40 AM
reggie miles 31 Mar 09 - 11:35 AM
Zen 31 Mar 09 - 12:01 PM
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Subject: My song Wall Street Blues
From: reggie miles
Date: 23 Jan 09 - 06:57 PM

Some eciting news to share:

What are the odds, that guy from a small town in northwest Washington State, playing a homemade acoustic resophonic guitar, built out of junk he found at garage sales and using a propeller shaft bearing from a boat for a bottleneck slide, could catch the attention of a writer from one of the largest media outlets on the planet, with a song that he wrote in a single day? Hmmmmm, I dunno, a million to one, several million to one? Whatever the odds, they have to be enormous. Factor in that the writer lives on the other side of the country and the fact that, previously, I've had no exposure there and you've got a web dream come true.

I've rarely had the chance to get beyond the Northwest. Though I've thoroughly enjoy the few opportunities that I've had come my way to get around the country, it's not been something that's easy to organize. Still, I look forward to doing more of that.

I'm presently in the midst of organizing a high resolution head shot photo for that writer with the Wall Street Journal, who is creating an article about folks who have written songs about our difficult economy. He caught a YouTube video of my song "Wall Street Bail Out Blues" and interviewed me by phone the other day. This is my newest song. Though I've been playing it a lot, so far, the video is the only recorded version of it.

Reggie Miles Wall Street Blues on YouTube

The video itself was caught only 3 or 4 days after I had written the song in early October. I was still working up the guitar part and memorizing the verses. The version that I'm singing at present has changed a little from that earlier one.

This song has made quite an impact on those who have heard it. The reactions that I've received to it have surprised me. Folks have commented about how they've been stopped dead in their tracks by its message. Others have burst into applause after hearing it for the first time or shouted out their agreement with the message as I sang. It's clearly striking a nerve and resonating with listeners. It's a great feeling knowing that the strength of this message is causing that kind of response.

Who knows where this might lead? It might lead nowhere. Call me an optimist but I have a feeling that this could mean that a few more seconds of my elusive fifteen minutes of fame might be coming my way.

Hey, it ain't the cover of the Rolling Stone but it's not every day that a writer from a major worldwide news outlet seeks me out to talk to me about my songwriting. That's a huge validation of my efforts at staying true to my vision.

I must be doing something right.

Thanks for listening

Follow your dreams.


Reg


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: Charley Noble
Date: 23 Jan 09 - 09:44 PM

Reg-

Sounds like a song for our hard times!

Looks as if you are singing at the Pikes Street Public Market in Seattle.

Good luck!

Charley Noble, who's been there


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: Ythanside
Date: 23 Jan 09 - 09:57 PM

Good on ya bud, hope it goes well for you.

Ythanside


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: Nerd
Date: 24 Jan 09 - 03:28 PM

Good song, and good video too. Best of luck--hope the coverage helps, and if so enjoy the ride!


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: Stewart
Date: 24 Jan 09 - 04:49 PM

Hi Reg,

It couldn't have happened to a better guy.
And a good song for our sorry times.

Keep singin'
and a sawin'

Cheers, S. in Seattle


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: Stewart
Date: 06 Feb 09 - 02:24 PM

Here it is!
Reggie Miles made it into the Wall Street Journal
A most unlikely place for a Pike Place Market Busker!


"Wall Street Bail Out Blues" by Reggie Miles

Everybody's bloggin' 'bout The 2008 recession
It's a who's who of who's lost everything
And who's gonna get possession

There's a bailout coming, but it's not for you.
It's for all those creeps hiding what they do.

So far, about 72,000 people have given it a listen on YouTube. Only about 650 have tuned in to guitarist Reggie Miles's recession-related posting on the same site, but he doesn't feel ignored.

Musicians Marcy Shaffer, pictured, and Reggie Miles, below, are among the tunesmiths who've tried to set the nation's economic woes to song.

A longtime busker who plays most days at Seattle's Pike Place Market, Mr. Miles says he has never had the money to buy stocks and bonds and that his only retirement plan is to stay healthy enough to keep playing until he drops dead.

The 54-year-old was inspired to write about Wall Street's current troubles one day last October after watching TV coverage of a particularly bad day in the market. "All of a sudden, my ear got kind of attuned to all the jargon they were using, and it hit me that those were some great lines," says Mr. Miles, who hopes that the resulting song, "Wall Street Bail Out Blues," will help listeners vent their feelings.

Mr. Miles certainly does in the second of the song's 14, sometimes caustic verses:

Wall Street millionaires
Vultures comin' home to roost
They want more corporate welfare
To pad their golden parachutes

----------------

Well done Reggie!
And a nice picture there too!

Cheers, S. in Seattle


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: Rapparee
Date: 06 Feb 09 - 02:32 PM

Great! When you're rich and famous and getting a bail out package, will you still remember us poor Mudcatters?


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: Stewart
Date: 06 Feb 09 - 03:01 PM

Correction to above:

"Among other well-known recording artists, guitarist Neil Young recently posted an online video featuring a downturn-related song called "Fork in the Road." Sample lyric:

There's a bailout coming, but it's not for you.
It's for all those creeps hiding what they do.

So far, about 72,000 people have given it a listen on YouTube."

Out of context. The 72,000 hits on YouTube refer to the Neil Young video. I omitted a couple lines in my 'cut and paste.'

Sorry,

S. in Seattle
where Reggie still sings
every day at Pike Place


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego
Date: 06 Feb 09 - 06:21 PM

Herewith a few verses I penned while contemplating the above. It could be sung to the tune of "Sweet Betsy From Pike" (or "Charlie, The Midnight Marauder" (Limeliters).

Oh, do you remember when life was so good
That all of the bad guys lived down in the "hood,"
When real estate values were heading sky high,
And we knew that we all would be rich by and by?

But Wall Street shenanigans soon did unfold,
And began to leave you and me out in the cold,
Like mushrooms they kept us all down in the dark,
And kept feeding us bull like the plants in the park.

So many bought houses they couldn't afford
And when money gave out they just prayed to the Lord.
"Please help us, Oh Jesus, the mortgage is due."
But the Lord, he ain't payin', so it's all up to you.

In tract after tract, they hung sign after sign
That said "Repo" or "Bank Sale" or "Free Re-design."
The lawns were all brown and the plants overgrown,
If the houses could talk, I believe they'd just moan.

Your friendly old car dealer just down the street,
Was once sitting pretty in his plush driver's seat.
Now, all forlorn, he sits out in the lot,
And waits for the buyers who visit him not.

Now so many people are out of a job,
The crooks cannot find anybody to rob.
Our 401K's are now all shot to hell,
And the prospects are bleak for our grandkids as well.

When people complain, I can't understand why;
We've got the best government money can buy.
No matter on which side of the aisle they sit,
You can bet they don't care about us, not one whit!

Their nests are all feathered, their ducks in a row,
And here we all sit like trained dogs in a show.
Politicians keep saying it's going to get worse,
To justify stealing much more from your purse.

So, stand and deliver – not dollars, but letters!
And let those in office know they're not YOUR betters!
They all work for US, NOT the other way 'round,
Let's get this thing fixed, 'fore we're all run to ground.


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: sharyn
Date: 06 Feb 09 - 10:23 PM

Congratulations, Reggie.

Nice video.

And T.J., you've got some good lines there.

Sharyn


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: Alice
Date: 06 Feb 09 - 10:49 PM

That is great news, Reg.
Congratulations.


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: KT
Date: 06 Feb 09 - 11:19 PM

Congrats, Reggie! That's great!


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: katlaughing
Date: 06 Feb 09 - 11:39 PM

Reggie, congratulations!! That's major, man! Very kewl!

I'd missed this when Reggie first posted it. Thanks for the link and cut and paste, Stewart.


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: van lingle
Date: 07 Feb 09 - 08:04 AM

Yeah!


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 07 Feb 09 - 09:35 AM

Congratulations - do more folks drop money in your hat now you've appeared in such a classy journal?

fancy folkies, especially a busker! getting a mention in the Wall St Journal! I've passed on the article to Australian folkies to inspire them.

sandra


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: reggie miles
Date: 29 Mar 09 - 12:11 PM

Thanks everyone for your kind comments! Here's some additional fallout from this bit of press. I found out that five days after this article was released in the U.S. that the Journal's Euro edition also released this same story. I didn't even know that they had a Euro edition. However minor, I'm grateful for the additional coverage that I might have received throughout Europe via this story.

Then I received an email from someone who worked for a French news magazine called the Courrier International who asked me for a hi res photo to use with their reprint of the same story in their weekly. After I emailed them the photo, I asked if they could send me a couple of copies of the magazine but it's been weeks and I've not received anything yet.

The person at the CI also mentioned that they would be willing to offer a fee for the use of the photo, 150 Euros but I would have to fill out a couple of pages of info and email it back to them. The info that they were looking for included my bank account # and some additional info that I thought was kind of strange to ask for. I'm assuming that they wanted to transfer the money directly into my account. This has made me a little paranoid about sending off that kind of sensitive information in an email. I've not offered them anything and more than likely will not. I was hoping that the fee could simply be mailed to my home address. I was going to offer the money to the photographer who captured the image of me.

Sandra in Sydney, I don't know that getting more press necessarily translates to better offerings for my music as I play on the street. I don't think that most folks would have even recognized me from the photo in the Wall Street Journal. Though the article starts on the cover of the February 6th edition, the part of the story that features info about me and the image is on page A8. However, the online version of the article, that has been archived at the WSJ online, features an even larger photo of me and also includes an interactive page that has a clip of my song with about a dozen others. Here's a link to that online version of the Robert Tomsho's story.

The Wall Street Journal story "No Dough in the Do Re Me" by Robert Tomsho

I think if there've been any real, positive, tangible repercussions, it's been that folks have decided to take a closer look and listen to what it is that I've been doing of late. Though I can't be certain, it seems that some opportunities have come my way that may be linked to this recent press I've received. I was invited to play my song on a long running local public access TV show called the Blues To Do Room and I posted the video of that appearance on one of my online pages. Here's a link to that page where the video can be found.

Wall Street Bail Out Blues featured on Marley Walker's Blues To Do Room

And who can say where it all might eventually lead. I'm still hoping for the best. What else can I do?

Many thanks for your support, Reg


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: breezy
Date: 29 Mar 09 - 01:42 PM

Nice for you reggie but dont get carried away
just stick up a notice when you go out to play
Cos apparently I have appeared on T v
In Poland ,Slovakia and Japan that makes three

Ive had pictures taken and Cds I've sold
from Puerto Rico, Venezuala, Korea and beyond
but its all very fleeting and its great at the time
But I just keep singing one song at a time.

x


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 29 Mar 09 - 05:55 PM

Here is your reference in The Courrier Internationl

Add your own H&W

courrierinternational.com/article.asp?obj_id=94786

Le blues du plan de sauvetage pour Wall Street

"Les millionnaires de Wall Street,
Leur cupidité de vautour leur retombe dessus
Ils veulent qu'on leur accorde des aides
Pour garnir leur parachute doré."

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: reggie miles
Date: 29 Mar 09 - 11:04 PM

Hey thanks Gargoyle! They never even used my photo! Very strange! I spent hours uploading it to them via my slow web speed connection. They also never bothered to let me know when the article was going to be released. I guess this means I won't be getting my two copies of the magazine either.

Breezy, yep, it is a fleeting thing. It was only a mention, a few paragraphs and a photo but it's the magnitude of the attention that I've never received before. And to get this kind of association, via the article, with other fine songwriters is very special and validating to me. It's still very exciting for me to think about. Oh, I'm still singing one song at a time to passersby on the street but it makes me feel far better about what I'm doing knowing that somebody out there noticed and was nice enough to tell alot of other folks about my efforts. :o)

Reg


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: reggie miles
Date: 31 Mar 09 - 05:16 AM

And while we're on the subject of odds, what are the odds that I would finally get some recognition for my efforts via this, albeit minor mention in this internationally published article, only to then be told by our only local folk festival that my application to perform wasn't worthy of being included in this year's lineup? This is a festival that I have offered my talents freely to for the last several decades.

The last six years I've hosted a how-to workshop for those seeking to unlock the secrets of playing music with a hand saw. Last year alone we had about one hundred folks in attendance at my free workshop. I believe that made my workshop one of the best attended events at the entire festival. But no, it wasn't worth including in this year's schedule either.

I've seen the programming commitee for this event give multiple stage performances to the some of the same folks again and again over the years while denying some truly talented applicants the chance of getting even one appearance scheduled at the event. The offending applicants merely changed the name and description of their act to score more than one opportunity to perform. I'm not saying that honest mistakes won't be made over the course of time with shenanigans like that going on, but this is not simple oversight on the part of commitee members.

How is it that a writer for an international news outlet can find my efforts worthy of making mention of in his story but I can't even get the support of our local folk festival? This is an event that I've spent an enormous amount of my time giving freely to via my performances and that's not even counting the time and effort at providing a quality workshop that drew hundreds of folks over the years. Of course, there's no guarantee when one fills out an application that a performance or workshop slot will be available but given this recent press and the huge success of my past workshop efforts, I had no idea that this would be the result. After all of my years of effort on their behalf, to be snubbed by this event is a little hard to take.

So, I wrote them a letter, a nasty one, using some colorful language to describe where they could remove their heads from and how they could find a place that was absent of sunlight to stick their rejection. Yep, it was a very uncharacteristic move on my part to offer such feelings, especially about such a trivial matter as being rejected by a festival where nothing tangible is being offered in return for my efforts (no fee) except a half hour appearance on what usually amounted to a pretty funky stage. They've only rarely offered me a decent venue to play. However, they've made certain that big ol' electric rock and rap bands get some of the largest and best equipped stages available. Did I mention that this was a folk festival?

It's becoming increasingly apparent that being silent just isn't going to help and that I've got to stand up for myself in order to keep from getting treated like dirt. If I don't stand up for myself, who will? Okay, maybe I should behave more like a songwriter and find a creative outlet for my feelings in this matter. I'll work on that. I seem to be able to write best when I have strong feelings to inspire me and right about now I've got some very strong feelings. Well, on the bright side, I've got all weekend long to enjoy the rest of the festival.


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: pavane
Date: 31 Mar 09 - 07:40 AM

Assuming you mean Probability (not 'odds' unless you are placing a bet) then the probability of any event happening is between 0 (never) and 1 (always).

After the event, if it has already happened, the probability is always 1.

If I hit a golf ball, what is the probability that it will land on that exact blade of grass?

Very low, but the probability that it will land on "A blade of grass" is very high (not 1, as it might land in water or in a tree). After it lands, then you cannot speak of a probability, but a certainty.


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: reggie miles
Date: 31 Mar 09 - 11:35 AM

From Webster's: odds (1) the probability that one thing is so or will happen rather than another (2) the ratio of the probability of one event to that of an alternative event


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Subject: RE: What are the odds?
From: Zen
Date: 31 Mar 09 - 12:01 PM

Whatever the probability... a very fine and pertinent song Reggie and well performed.

And the local folk festival are definitely the ones losing out. My kind of music altogether and power to your elbow as they say here in Scotland.

Zen


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